Curriculum

Bradley’s MSA curriculum offers an applied education in current accounting techniques with opportunities to further your knowledge within an accounting specialization and develop a wide range of business skills. Structured for maximum flexibility, the program allows for customization according to your career interests, helping you hone specific skills to expand your responsibilities within your current organization.

Core courses focus on application of technical knowledge and assist in enhancing your problem-solving, critical thinking, and analytical skills. In addition, a strong writing and research orientation provides in-depth opportunity to develop essential verbal and written communication skills as you work through real-business examples of accounting problems.

Elective courses allow you to acquire knowledge within new interest areas, improve weaker skills sets, or to concentrate your studies within a given specialization. For example, as a member of the Internal Audit Education Partnership (IAEP), the Accounting Department is developing a graduate level concentration in internal auditing for MSA students.

Accredited for Excellence

The Department of Accounting has received separate accounting accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) the premier accrediting body for business and accounting programs. Less than 180 business schools in the world have both business and accounting accreditations. Bradley’s Foster College of Business is one of only seven private schools in the Midwest with an AACSB accredited accounting program.

Curriculum Structure

The Master of Science in Accounting degree (MSA) requires 30 hours of course work to include a minimum of 15 credit hours of accounting courses and a maximum of 15 elective credit hours selected from courses offered within the MBA program and other disciplines.

Required, Core Courses (15 credit hours)

Complete the following accounting courses for a total of 12 credit hours:

ATG 601  Financial Accounting Theory ......................... Fall only

ATG 657  Advanced Auditing ..................................... Spring only

ATG 677  Federal Taxes II ........................................ Fall only

ATG 690  Applied Professional Accounting Research ........ Fall and Spring
                  (Comprehensive Exam) 

 

For the remaining 3 required accounting credit hours, select one of the following courses:

ATG 514  Advanced Managerial Accounting .................. Spring only

ATG 526  Fraud Examination ................................... Occasionally

ATG 530  Professional Interviewing Skills ................... Spring only

ATG 547  Internal Auditing .....................................  Spring only

ATG 548  Computer Assisted Audit Techniques ............. Fall only

ATG 561  International Accounting Issues .................... Fall only

ATG 585  Contemporary Issues in Accounting ............... Independent Study

ATG 590  Professional Accounting Problems ................. Independent Study

Accounting Elective (3 hours)

The accounting elective is to be chosen from the 500-level accounting courses (with the exception of ATG 505) listed in the graduate catalog.  Note: 500-level courses taken to complete requirements in an undergraduate degree cannot be used to complete master's degree requirements.

Elective (9 hours) Foster College of Business

For choices, see the listing of 600-level courses (with the exception of ATG 604) in the Foster College of Business MBA program and obtain approval from the MSA Program Coordinator.

Other Electives (6 hours)

May be taken in accounting with approval from the MSA Program Coordinator.  See "Note" above.  May also be taken outside of the college with approval from the MSA Program Coordinator. For business course choices, see the listing of 600-level courses (with the exception of ATG 604) in the Foster College of Business MBA program and obtain MSA Program Coordinator approval.

Other Requirements

As part of the 15 hours of program electives (Accounting, Foster College of Business, and Other), each MSA student must take either ATG 530 - Professional Interviewing Skills or M L 615 - Interpersonal Relations.

All students working towards an MSA degree (either through traditional admission or through the 3:2 program) will be required to abide by and meet all Graduate School policies and degree regulations located in the front of this catalog.

Comprehensive Examination

Each MSA student must take a written comprehensive examination.  This examination covers the graduate work that the student is presenting for the degree.  The time, place, and nature of the examination are a part of ATG 690.

Foundation Courses

Individuals entering the MSA program with an accounting degree from a regionally accredited university will not be required to complete any foundation courses. Individuals entering the MSA program with a non-accounting business degree from a regionally accredited university will be required to complete only the accounting foundation courses. For all other individuals, transcripts will be reviewed to determine whether the individual has completed courses equivalent to the business and accounting foundation courses within the last 10 years, and any foundation class for which an equivalent has not been completed will be required. Equivalency will be determined for a foundation course using the undergraduate equivalency guides. All foundation courses must be completed with a grade of B or better and must be completed prior to beginning the MSA degree requirements unless approval is given by the MSA Program Coordinator.

Business foundation courses include:

  • Accounting Principles - Financial - ATG 157
  • Accounting Principles - Managerial - ATG 158
  • Legal Environment of Business - BLW 342 or 542
  • Operations Management - M L 353 or 553
  • Organizational Management - M L 350 or 620
  • Microeconomics - ECO 221 or 506
  • Macroeconomics - ECO 222 or 608
  • Intro to Finance - FIN 322 or 522
  • Principles of Marketing - MTG 315 or 624
  • Quantitative Analysis - QM 263 or 502
  • Management Information Systems - MIS 173 or 672

Accounting foundation courses include: 

  • Cost Accounting - ATG 204
  • Intermediate Accounting - ATG 301
  • Intermediate Accounting - ATG 302
  • Accounting Systems and Control - ATG 383
  • Auditing - ATG 457
  • Federal Tax I - ATG 477

Foundation courses with a 600 course level option may be taken as one of the required program electives. For descriptions of required, elective, or foundational courses, view the graduate catalog.

Concentration in Internal Auditing

Internal auditors are employees of organizations who are responsible for evaluating corporate governance, risk management, and internal control activities. Since internal auditing touches nearly every aspect of an organization, it provides a tremendous opportunity for students to launch their careers because of the breadth of exposure they will receive. Students enrolled in the Master of Science in Accounting program or the 3:2 Accounting program may take nine hours of graduate course work in order to receive a concentration in internal auditing.

Students are required to take two three-hour courses:

  • ATG 547 Internal Auditing - 3 hours
  • ATG 548 Computer Assisted Audit Techniques - 3 hours

Students are required to take one three-hour elective from the following:

  • ATG 526 Fraud Examination - 3 hours
  • ATG 530 Professional Interviewing Skills - 3 hours
  • ATG 585 Contemporary Issues in Accounting - 3 hours (provided the course is focused on internal auditing)
  • ATG 590 Professional Accounting Problems - 3 hours (provided the course is focused on internal auditing)
  • ATG 605 Cooperative Education/Internship in Accounting - 3 hours (provided the internship is in internal auditing)

Additional Requirements

  • Students must maintain at least a 3.0 GPA in all classes taken for the concentration.
  • Students must sit for at least one part of a certification exam applicable to internal auditing before graduation.  This can be:
  1. The Certified Internal Auditor's exam offered by the Institute of Internal Auditors
  2. The Certified Public Accountant's exam
  3. The Certified Information Systems Auditor's exam
  4. Or The Certified Fraud Examiner's exam